Now that the head of the Catholic Church has been announced to be Jorge Bergoglio, ex-Archbishop of Buenos Aires, the word has been spreading that he played a significant role in the National Reorganization Process also known as the Last Military Junta or the Last Dictatorship.

The main charge against Bergoglio involves the kidnapping of two Jesuit priests, Orland Yorio and Francisco Jalics, who were taken by Navy officers in May 1976 and held under inhumane conditions for the missionary work they conducted in the country's slums, a politically risky activity at the time.

His chief accuser is journalist Horacio Verbitsky, the author of a book on the church called "El Silencio" ("The Silence"), which claims that Bergoglio withdrew his order's protection from the two priests, effectively giving the military a green light for their abduction.

Source: The Guardian

Is there any evidence supporting this claim?

  • 3
    Do you have any references to the claim? Mar 13, 2013 at 21:23
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    Cool - stick it on the text. Skeptics requires sources for claims. Mar 13, 2013 at 21:35
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    Welcome to Skeptics! Please summarise what it claims and how the author knows that. Ideally, provide some quotes & translations, so we can see for ourselves.
    – Oddthinking
    Mar 13, 2013 at 22:37
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    Welcome to Skeptics! This current links is a changing search result, giving us shifting goalposts. There are likely to be many conflicting claims made and this search result is likely to be filled with spam and/or abuse shortly. Please pick one or two of the claims, and quote them directly.
    – Oddthinking
    Mar 13, 2013 at 22:39
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    "The main charge against Bergoglio involves the kidnapping of two Jesuit priests, Orland Yorio and Francisco Jalics", suggest you focus on that - guardian.co.uk/world/2013/mar/14/…
    – Tom77
    Mar 14, 2013 at 8:12

1 Answer 1


I found this article and the language, I think, is telling. First, Bergoglio told them to leave what they were doing:

Verbitsky's reporting claims that Bergoglio ordered Yorio and Jalics to stop their work with the poor in Argentina's slums. When the men refused, the military government imprisoned them for a period of five months.

Then, the priests say that they were imprisoned because:

Yorio accused Bergoglio of effectively handing them over to the death squads by declining to tell the regime that he endorsed their work.

So, it sounds like the priest's complaint is that after he disobeyed a direct order and put himself in harm's way, the priest wanted Bergoglio to say that his actions were endorsed. Well, they weren't endorsed (actually, it is a rather serious matter to disobey one's superior in a religious order, in other circumstances they might have been punished). They were in disobedience, which means their actions specifically were forbidden. Now, the priest could be complaining that Bergoglio did not lie to cover their tracks, but that is a very, very different complaint.

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